In last position, sadly, would be Tiffany Trump, who has can’t seem to shake her image as the Little Match Girl of the Trump clan, the outsider looking wistfully at the party through a rose-coloured window.
Yet there was Tiffany at the Republican National Convention on Tuesday, dressed in a wide-legged powder-blue pantsuit, her hair styled for maximum platinum impact, smiling beatifically as she denounced the evils of mind control and implored voters to reelect her father to prevent disaster in America.
As it happens, all four adult children spoke at the convention this week, though Ivanka, as usual, got prime position as the one to introduce her father Thursday night. In a weeklong hagiographic spectacle that deviated from political norms so much that at times it felt less like a political convention than a competitive exercise in hyperbolic fealty to a single person, it made perfect sense that two other family-adjacent figures with jobs in the Trump campaign also had convention slots: Eric’s wife, Lara Trump; and Donald Jr.’s girlfriend, Kimberly Guilfoyle.
Candidates always use family members as campaign props and deploy relatives, especially their wives (and occasionally their husbands) to testify to their good qualities. Joe Biden’s wife, Jill, spoke at the Democratic convention earlier this month; Biden accepted the Democratic nomination for president after a video tribute from a passel of grandchildren.
But Trump, perhaps even more than most politicians, places a high value on appearance, particularly on how things play on television. And it is no secret that he believes it is the job of his family to promote the family business — which is, for all intents and purposes, himself. Even still, it was striking how many family members had prime spots at the Republican convention and how many of them were women.